North and South Dakota farmers endorse rural students for $54,000 in scholarships

Farm Forum

ST. LOUIS –Thirty-six North and South Dakota students have been awarded a total of $54,000 in college scholarships from America’s Farmers Grow Ag Leaders, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund. The program raises awareness of the diverse career opportunities in the agriculture industry and provides scholarships to support students’ education in ag-related fields. Farmers play a vital role by promoting the opportunity to local students and endorsing their applications.

Stetson Ellingson of Saint Anthony, North Dakota, a 2016 scholarship recipient, exemplifies the quality of students who are a selected for Grow Ag Leaders scholarships because of his passion for ag and leadership. “Stetson is definitely a leader as he has served this past year as chapter president and last year as the vice president. In his roles, he has pushed his teammates to develop goals and really see out those goals. He is a great advocate for agriculture. When the editor of the school newspaper wrote a story on why eating beef is bad, Stetson responded with a letter that included many studies and scientific reasoning on why this isn’t the case, “ said Tanasha Wanner, Mandan High School FFA Advisor. “Stetson is one of the most knowledgeable people in agriculture that I know. He’s worked for many years on his family’s ranch where he handles much of the data management and marketing, along with hands on work with the Angus cattle. Stetson demonstrates leadership by always leading by example.”

Grow Ag Leaders scholarships, administered by the National FFA Organization, are available to high school seniors and college students in 1,326 eligible counties across 40 states pursuing degrees in ag-related fields. To be considered, each applicant is required to receive endorsements from at least three local farmers. Both FFA members and non-FFA members are eligible to apply. With support from the Monsanto Fund, more than $1.1 million in scholarships has been awarded to students since Grow Ag Leaders piloted in 2014. For the list of winners or more information, visit